Dashen Bank, one of the leading private banks in the country, in celebration of International Women’s Day, inaugurated its all-female run branch today, March 8, 2021.
The new branch located on Airport Road and on the HQ building of one of the sisters’ companies of Dashen, National oil Company (NOC), is entirely run by women from the bottom up to the managerial position.
The Bole Noc all-female run branch has around 15 female employees. Nationwide, Dashen has over 10,000 employees, of which 31pc are women, while at the top level, 27pc of managerial and high-level jobs are filled by women.
“The role of women in the workplace has been limited to few stereotypical positions for many reasons,” said Asfaw Alemu, CEO of Dashen Bank, “we want to show women can do it all and contribute a positive message in this regard”.
“The bringing of more women to the spotlight and leadership roles has been the target of the Bank, and this is a move in the right direction,” he added.
However, Asfaw stressed that there is still much work to be done as he pointed out that only one is female out of the 11 vice presidents at the Bank.
The Bank also stated that it plans to open other all-female branches in regional states and offer female-centered banking services.
The Bank, which celebrated its 25th year anniversary last month, has over 450 branches and 2.5 million customers across the country.
At the end of the last fiscal year, Dashen mobilized total deposits of 67 billion birr and raised its capital to 8.57 billion birr.
By opening an all-female branch, Dashen is following the footsteps of two giant state-run companies, Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE) and Ethiopian Airlines.
CBE opened its first all-female run branch in April 2019 and while a second branch was opened last year in Lideta District, Addis Ababa.
To celebrate International Women’s Day last year, an Ethiopian Airlines flight from Addis Ababa to Stockholm and Oslo was managed by an all-women flight crew. The historic flight was operated by Ethiopian Airlines women professionals from flight deck all the way to the ground.
After Abiy assumed power, an experienced diplomat, Sahle-Work Zewde, was elected as the country’s president, making her Africa’s fourth and currently only female president. Zewde served for a long time in diplomacy, representing Ethiopia in many African countries, and also worked for the United Nations.
In addition, Abiy appointed women to half of his 20 ministerial positions in October 2018. Another woman, Birtukan Mideksa, a former judge, was also appointed as the head of the country’s elections board.
The parliament also swore in the country’s first female Supreme Court president, Meaza Ashenafi. A prominent women rights activist, Meaza is one of Ethiopia’s most seasoned lawyers and the founder of the Ethiopian Women Lawyers Association, having served as High Court Judge between 1989 and 1992.